That which does not kill us makes us stronger. - Friedrich Nietzsche
After a good pre-summer, we've had a few bad competitions this autumn. And honestly, I can not say it's improving either.
Our third last competition of the season, was in Stavanger on 12th-13th Oktober with the german judge Stefanie Semkat.
She arrived thursday afternoon and got to spend the entire evening relaxing and preparing for the competition at the hotel. On friday I took her to the beach for a walk with Quick (her Papillon) and my own dogs.
Competition started early on saturday with the jumping competitions. My first run for the day was jumping 1 with Niili.
It was a really cool run and Niili was following me good during the entire run. Of course, we can still work alot on the weaves and the winter will be used to train this with the help of Susan Garrett and her "2x2 Weave Pole Training DVD". You can find the DVD on this link, and yes, she send them international.
When I look at the run and the fact that we spent 6,31seconds in the weaves and some wide turns, it warm my heart when I see that we still had a speed of 4,36m/s in the run. It just shows me that we did a good thing for us when we moved on to grade 2 after this run. Now it will be fun to see how Niili will be able to compete with Leija on the same courses. Will she be able to match Leija's speed or will she go further?
Second run for the day was the jumping 2 with Leija. Even with our mistakes in the weaves, which I'm really starting to dislike, we managed to get a win. It wasn't that difficult, seeing that we were only two competitors in grade 2 small, but I would've preferred a clean run to grade 3.
Speed was good for Leija in the beginning, but I have started to see a trend in both myself and Leija, where I bend my back too much in turns, causing Leija to get the wrong directions from me and generally starting to lose speed when I do this. Hopefully this is something I can spend the winter on fixing, but when I get it sorted, she will be even faster than before.
This run showed me exactly how much time and speed we lose by not managing good weave-entrance and having to go back to fix weaves in a run. We lost approx 10.85sec on our "little" mistake there, and it turned us into a 3,79m/s run instead of a 4,83m/s run, when I deduct the time lost in weaves from the total time. However, when I look at the run by itself, if I get the turns tighter, accelaration back to normal and I straighten my back, I can see no problem in us managing a run speed of somewhere around 5,2-5,4m/s.
The third and last official run of the day was the team run with Leija. This was a agility course, where again we face the problem with the weaves. I don't have a video of this run, but I have the course below.
During this run everything was running smoothly until the weaves. One of the challenges that we see more and more in all grades now, is both sided weaves, meaning that you as a handler can be on both sides of the weaves, but higher the grade, the more frequent you go on the "wrong" side of the dog. Because of this, I need to be comfortable with doing this. In this run, I tried, but failed miserably.
Last run of the day; open jumping. It was a super fun way of finishing the day for both the dog and handler. Alot of people had fast runs, and of course we had a weave fault... We lost 9,60sec in that incident, and I lose all my motivation in the run.
I also did the same course with Niili, which was alot of running and not alot of control. But we both had super much fun in the course, so for us it was a success.
Thoughts after saturday;
After a gruelling day at the courses, we had a very relaxing and great dinner out on a restaurant, and we even managed to get a picture of all the ladies I entertained. the servers must have thought I was engaged in polygami, with all the wives.
So, Sunday was coming up:
Started the day with Jump 2 with both dogs. After a good first day with Niili, I decided to take her up to grade 2 in jumping, just because there is no point staying in grade 1 when we nail it and it's also easier for logistics on competitions with multiple rings.
Basically story of the day was alot of weave faults and not very good runs. I don't have any movies from this day, but the courses can be seen below:
I know it's a good time since last blog, but we just needed to get everything on a arms length.
Tommy & Leija